By Keith Bradsher
SUVs have taken over America's roads. advert campaigns advertise them as more secure and "greener" than traditional vehicles and simple to deal with in undesirable climate. yet little or no concerning the SUV's snapshot is exact. They poorly safeguard occupants and inflict terrible harm in crashes, they guzzle fuel, and they're not easy to control.
Keith Bradsher has been on the vanguard in reporting the calamitous protection and environmental checklist of SUVs, together with the infamous Ford-Firestone rollover controversy. In excessive and strong, he lines the checkered heritage of SUVs, exhibiting how they got here to be categorized now not as passenger autos yet as gentle vehicles, that are topic to much less strict rules on protection, gasoline mileage, and pollution. He makes a strong case that those cars are even worse than we suspect--for their occupants, for different motorists, for pedestrians and for the planet itself.
In the culture of Unsafe at Any Speed and Fast nutrients Nation, Bradsher's e-book is a damning exposé of an that places us all in danger, even if we realize it or now not.
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Extra info for High and Mighty: The Dangerous Rise of the SUV
Consummate networkers, the dealers described Jeeps enthusiastically to their many friends on the boards of local Little Leagues, charities and religious institutions. Jeep sales quadrupled during the 1970s. " The corpse of Jeep was definitely stirring. But a huge obstacle still remained for Meyers: government regulation. Jeeps, and the many sport utility vehicles that would follow them, were inherently less safe, less fuel-efficient and more polluting than cars. Their high, heavy, stiff underbodies, designed to take the punishment of scaling muddy mountain tracks, made them REVIVING A CORPSE 23 hard to stop during emergency braking and made them guzzle gas.
Countless trips to Washington by Meyers and his lieutenants, as well as considerable lobbying by General Motors and other automakers on the fuel-economy issue, had spared the Jeep division from spending billions of dollars on engineering work, if the division had been able to find scarce engineers at all. "It escaped regulation—we didn't have to worry about fuel economy much at all, we didn't have to worry about bumper height standards, we didn't have to worry about side-impact standards, we didn't have to worry about emissions standards," Meyers said.
Other loopholes, like those in the tire and bumper rules, remain to this day. SUVs were counted as light trucks for all these safety rules. Most important, American Motors fought off government efforts to address vehicle stability, the bane of Jeeps from their earliest days. The Transportation Department's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, better known as NHTSA, announced plans in 1973 to regulate how prone vehicles were to rolling over. But when the department had trouble measuring stability and the auto industry fought the idea vigorously, the department dropped the idea of issuingregulations.
High and Mighty: The Dangerous Rise of the SUV by Keith Bradsher